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Five years in, Scalawag is reframing who gets included in “the South” (and how to build a business off it)
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Oct. 3, 2013, 12:58 p.m.

This past weekend, the Nieman Foundation (of which Nieman Lab is a part) celebrated its 75th anniversary. One of the highlights was The 90-Minute Nieman, which brought together a number of Harvard and MIT professors to give brief lectures on their work. The all-star lineup: Jill Lepore, William Julius Wilson, Katie Hinde, Ethan Zuckerman, Sheila Jasanoff, Nicco Mele, and Nancy F. Koehn.

They were all great, but both Zuckerman’s and Mele’s talks will be of particular interest to Lab readers — go check out videos at the Nieman Foundation site.

Zuckerman wrote up his presentation on his blog; he summed up his argument this way: “journalism needs to help people be effective and engaged civic actors, and if it doesn’t, it shouldn’t expect to survive financially or in terms of influence.” Video here.

Mele took an even broader look at the journalism landscape, diving into the “promise and peril of technology” with an anecdote about 3D printers. Like Zuckerman, Mele focuses on the individual and tries to locate a new nexus of media control. Video here.

What Mele seemed to suggest is that, whether or not we’ve noticed, industrial journalism has already failed.

Check out all the 90-Minute Nieman videos. More videos from the weekend are being Jane Mayer talking about her work and accepting the I.F. Stone Medal for Journalistic Independence, and LBJ biographer Robert Caro in conversation with The Washington Post’s Anne Hull.

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